My dad was always a big tennis player and I remember as a little kid wanting to learn so badly.
I’ll never forget the first time he took me to the courts. I was pretty young, around 7 and he gave me my own little racket. I was so happy to be able to learn from him. He took me out and we spent hours hitting the ball, trying to learn a forehand stroke. I think both because I had a natural love for it and also because of my father’s love of it I became absolutely obsessed.
I know that one of my father’s greatest joys is watching me play. I’m still in high school so it’s been very nice now that we’re starting our season and he can come to my matches. While a lot has changed in the last months, this makes me feel somewhat normal again. I am grateful that I can still turn my head and see him cheering me on.
No matter what happens with his disease, I think that tennis will always keep me connected to him.